“Behold I am with you always, even to the close of the age.”

Matthew 28:20

Jesus promised that He would never abandon His people; He promised that He would remain until the end of time. Jesus walked the earth over 2000 years ago, yet He is still present and active in the lives of His people. He is with them. However, recognizing God’s presence in our world today takes a ‘trained eye’ and an act of faith. Jesus can most readily be recognized through the witness of Christian people, people who acknowledge and testify to the power and presence of God in their lives. The ‘Encounter with Christ’ stories help to highlight how God is working in the lives of the people in the parish of St. Magdalen’s Church. These stories are meant to help those who read them to more easily recognize God’s presence in their own lives. God wants to be known by you and to work in your life—invite Him to do so.

Surrender Your Life to Jesus

11-13-2016Encountering ChristJohn Yanuzzi

I would like to share the life experiences which led me to develop an intimate personal relationship with Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. In 1989 I struggled to deal with the loss of my Dad. I began to search for answers to life's questions, but I looked in the wrong places. I sought after worldly pleasures to fill the void in my heart, eventually hitting rock-bottom. One evening as I was flipping channels, I came across a TV Evangelist.

As I gazed at the screen I heard him say five words that would greatly impact me: "Surrender your life to Jesus." I fell to my knees in tears; I felt the Lord was opening the eyes of my heart. A journey of healing and an awesome walk with Jesus began. Each day I would attend Mass and receive the Eucharist. The Eucharist provided me with spiritual nourishment and strengthened me to face my daily challenges. Yet, as I continued on my journey, my relationship with Jesus was tested. In 1999 my 15-year marriage came to an end. Once again I began searching for answers, this time at the Altar of God. It was through this trial that I began to read the Bible daily. It took five years to work through the pain of divorce but God used this suffering to give me a new perspective on His mercy and providence. I began to discover that only Jesus could take my pain, suffering, and brokenness and turn it into strength, hope, and joy. My faith was tested again in June of 2015 when I experienced the sadness of a broken relationship. As I prayed and reflected on this painful loss, the Holy Spirit directed me to attend Eucharistic Adoration and to become a committed adorer. During adoration I poured out my feelings to Jesus and the healing process began again. The Eucharist provided the peace my heart was yearning for; adoration enabled me to place my relationship with God as the highest priority. In closing, I encourage everyone to come to Eucharistic Adoration. Please come and spend 20 minutes with Jesus. No matter what you are experiencing in your life He will use your situation to draw you closer to Himself. Come to the Jesus, the King of Kings and He will bring hope and light to your life.